Sept. 23, 2008
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – The top rushing performance in the SEC this season, the school’s 48th career 1,000-yard rusher and one the nation’s top third down conversions highlight this week’s offensive notebook, which can be found each Tuesday during the season on RollTide.com.
MR. COFFEE: Alabama junior running back Glen Coffee set the Alabama single-game record with a 16.2-yard per carry average (minimum 10 attempts) at Arkansas last weekend. Coffee ran 10 times for 162 yards and scored on runs of 87 and 31 yards in the Tide’s 35-point first half. The previous record was 14.9-yard per carry average by Santonio Beard against Mississippi in 2002. Beard had 10 rushing attempts for 149 yards and a school-record tying five touchdowns against the Rebels.
1,000-YARD RUSHERS: Coffee became the 48th Crimson Tide player to eclipse the 1,000-yard career rushing mark with his 10-carry, 162-yard effort at Arkansas on Sept. 20. In 25 games, Coffee has 224 rushing attempts for 1,128 yards and six touchdowns in his career. He averages 5.0 yards per carry in his career. Coffee is tied with former Alabama quarterback Tyler Watts for 36th place on the school’s all-time rushing list with 1,128 yards. In four games this season, Coffee has 47 rushing attempts for 404 yards and two touchdowns and averages 101 yards per game. Sophomore running back Terry Grant has 981 career rushing yards and with 19 more yards will become the school’s 49th career 1,000-yard rusher.
87-YARD RUN IS COFFEE’S LONGEST: The 87-yard touchdown run by Glen Coffee against Arkansas is the fourth-longest run in Crimson Tide history and a career long for him at Alabama. It marked the second consecutive week that he has posted a career-long rush, along with a 51-yard run against Western Kentucky on Sept. 13. Coffee ranks third in the SEC and 26th nationally in rushing, averaging 101.0 yards per game, and ranks second in the SEC with an 8.6 yards per carry average.
BIG PLAYS: The Crimson Tide was full of big plays in its 49-14 win at Arkansas on Sept. 20. Alabama’s seven touchdowns averaged 49 yards per play and included four touchdowns of 60 or more yards. The list included an 87-yard TD run by Glen Coffee, a 64-yard interception return by Javier Arenas, a 74-yard interception return by Justin Woodall and a 62-yard run by Roy Upchurch.
FAST-STARTING TIDE: Alabama scored 21 first quarter points last Saturday at Arkansas and went to the half with a 35-7 advantage. The Crimson Tide has outscored its opposition this season a combined 64-0 in the first quarter and 102-13 in the first half of its four games. Alabama also shutout Clemson (13-0), Tulane (13-0) and Western Kentucky (17-0) in the first period this year. The Tide has continued its hot start through the second quarter as well, outscoring its opponents by a 102-13 margin during the first half of play this season.
FIRST-HALF EXPLOSIVE: The 35 points scored by the Crimson Tide in the first half at Arkansas were the most by Alabama since the Tide scored 42 points in the first half of a 56-7 win over UTEP on October 6, 2001, at Legion Field in Birmingham, a game that Alabama led 42-0 at halftime. The 35 points also is the most in a half for the Tide under the direction of head coach Nick Saban, surpassing the 31 points scored in the first half against Western Kentucky on September 13, 2008. Below is the top scoring halves for Alabama under second-year head coach Nick Saban:
Highest Scoring Halves Under Saban: 35 (at Arkansas, Sept. 20, 2008 - 1st Half); 31 (Western Kentucky, Sept. 13, 2008 - 1st Half); 28 (Western Carolina, Sept. 1, 2007 - 2nd Half); 27 (Colorado, Dec. 30, 2007 -1st Half); 24 (Tennessee, Oct. 20, 2007 - 2nd Half) and 24 (Western Carolina, Sept. 1, 2007 -1st Half).
TIDE SCORES MOST POINTS IN AN SEC GAME SINCE 1990; LARGEST SEC MARGIN SINCE 2002: Alabama’s 49 points scored against Arkansas is the most by the Crimson Tide in an SEC game since a 59-28 win over Vanderbilt on September 29, 1990. It is also the most points by Alabama in an SEC road contest since a 62-27 win at Mississippi on October 7, 1989. The 35-point margin of victory is the largest SEC victory margin since a 42-7 win over Mississippi on October 12, 2002.
WILSON SETS ALABAMA CAREER TD PASSES MARK: Senior quarterback John Parker Wilson broke the Alabama career record for touchdown passes on a 25-yard pass to Julio Jones with 8:31 left in the second quarter at Arkansas, the 42nd passing TD of his Crimson Tide career. Wilson surpassed Brodie Croyle (41 from 2002-05) for the record. Jones caught both the record-tying and record-breaking TD passes from Wilson, including a 12-yard catch against Western Kentucky that tied the career record.
SCORING SPREE: Alabama has scored 90 points in the last two weeks, beating Western Kentucky 41-7 and Arkansas 49-14. The 90 points are the most scored by the Tide in back-to-back games since posting 92 points against South Carolina (36-37) and UTEP (56-7) during the 2001 season.
3RD DOWN SUCCESS: The Alabama offense has been outstanding at converting third downs in 2008. The Crimson Tide ranks third in the SEC and are 15th nationally by converting 50.9 percent (27 of 53) of their third-down opportunities. UA was especially good at converting third downs against Clemson and Western Kentucky. The Tide converted 11 of 17 (64.7 percent) third-down chances against the Tigers in the season opener and then made good on 64.3 percent (9 of 14) of their third-down plays against Western Kentucky. Alabama is also 3 for 3 in fourth-down situations this season.